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Thunderbird Wall

Thunderbird Wall

Thunderbird Wall

Page Type: Route

Location: California, United States, North America

Object Title: Thunderbird Wall

Route Type: Mountaineering

Season: Fall

Time Required: Most of a day

Rock Difficulty: 5.7 (YDS)

Difficulty: III, 5.7+

Number of Pitches: 4

Grade: III

Route Quality: 
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Page By: brutus of wyde

Created/Edited: Oct 1, 2006 / Mar 23, 2009

Object ID: 230865

Hits: 3103 

Page Score: 74.92%  - 5 Votes 

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On the steep wall to the left of Twilight Pillar is a prominent crack system which crosses a ledge. Early season, there is a snow patch on this ledge which is shaped like a Kachina Thunderbird.

later in the year, the ghost of this thunderbird appears as a shadow during certain times of the day, when the lighting is right.

The Thunderbird Wall starts on this ledge and ascends the crack system to the summit in four pitches.

Getting There

This route can be reached by climbing directly up from the Norman Clyde Glacier. It is also possible to traverse to the left from the base of Twilight Pillar on a very loose fourth class ledge system to reach the base of the crack.

Route Description

Norman Clyde Pk. - Thunderbird Wall

See the attached route topo and photo topo.

Be advised that this route receives very little traffic, and as such, one may find an unbelievable quantity of loose rock while sampling these pitches.

Helmets should be considered mandatory, and a high degree of competence in climbing on loose rock (testing of holds, setting protection so as to keep the rope away from sharp or loose sections, etc.) will contribute to one's survival.

Be aware that the descent from the summit of Norman Clyde Peak is not a trivial affair, involving extensive 4th class routefinding, and attempting to downclimb after dark will likely result in an unplanned bivouac.

Impressive Knife Edge Summit of Norman Clyde Peak
Descent from the summit of Norman Clyde Peak starts with the traverse of the knife-edge ridge pictured here. The routefinding gets less obvious after you lerave the ridge.

Essential Gear

Take a standard backcountry rack. We found a few BallNutz and some Alien Hybrids to be useful as well.

External Links

Add External Links text here.


Norman Clyde Pk. - Thunderbird WallNorman Clyde Peak, Thunderbird Wall